Freelance Quote Templates
Freelance assignments come in many different shapes and sizes. But the importance of clear, cohesive pricing structures remains the same whether one is a freelance cake maker, copywriter, or carpenter. No matter the industry, a skillfully written service quote can be the difference between winning and losing a client, so knowing how to create one should be a top priority for all freelancers. The quickest way to create brand-compatible freelance quotes is with preformatted quote templates. Templates make it easier to draft quotes by providing examples of effective subheadings, cost charts, T&Cs, and other features. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of downloadable quote templates.
What is a freelance quote?
A freelance quote is a written document that breaks down all the costs associated with a particular project or service. Its purpose is to give prospective clients a clear opinion on how much the service is likely to cost and how this figure has been calculated. The client can then accept the quote or walk away and begin price negotiations with a different freelancer.
Freelance quotes are important because they state the expectations for both parties, establish project deadlines, inform invoices and serve as a notice of intent to work together. Aside from the total cost, quotes should include clear information on approved payment methods, billing structures, progress milestones, and any conditions or circumstances which might impact completion.
What is a freelance quote template?
A freelance quote template is a preformatted (and sometimes prefilled) document that’s designed to be used as a writing guide. There are many styles to choose from, with lots of different and varied examples of headings, subheadings, cost charts, price breakdowns, and other features.
The simplest way to create a new quote is to download your chosen template and then edit the document using a word processor, making sure to replace the example text with information about your own project and client.
How to Write a Freelance Quote
The clearer your quotes, the faster prospective clients will be able to make up their minds and determine if they want to work with you. If they choose to proceed with a project, the quote serves as a legally binding sales agreement. This is why it’s so important to draft every new quote with the utmost care and precision. You may be held to the terms of a quote even if circumstances change, so calculate all costs carefully.
Here are some of the most important elements to include in your freelance quotes:
1 – Summary of Services
This should be a succinct summary of the service(s) you intend to provide. You’ll add more information later when you break down the individual costs involved in the project, so keep this section brief (1 or 2 paragraphs).
Be specific. For instance, if you’ve agreed to write articles for a client’s blog, state how many articles, the expected word count, whether or not images and/or links will be included, and whether you’re willing to do further work on edits and revisions. The clearer you are, the less chance of disputes developing over what the client is and is not paying for.
2 – Project Schedule and Deadlines
Some clients will have a strict deadline that they need you to work within. Other clients will be happy to take your lead and let you decide how fast to complete the project. In any case, it’s important to include a feasible schedule or timeline in every freelance quote.
How precise the schedule needs to be will depend on the type of project or service being provided as well as outside factors like whether your client needs to supply materials before each stage can be completed. The most important objective here is transparency. If you’re not sure, make it clear to your client. The terms in freelance quotes can usually be altered if necessary, but there’s no guarantee a client will be amenable to changes. Don’t commit to deadlines unless you’re sure you can deliver them.
3 – Detailed Cost Breakdown
This should be the most detailed section of your freelance quote. Use it to break down the individual costs and expenses involved in delivering the service or project. Divide costs for different types of expenses into categories with their own subheadings.
Payment Rate (Hourly, Monthly, Or Per Project)
In this section, state your payment rate at the time of writing. This could be an hourly rate, monthly retainer, or per project charge. It depends on the nature of the service and how you prefer to handle cost calculations. There are lots of different ways to charge a client, but in all cases, the rate must be clearly defined to avoid disagreements.
This amount refers only to the costs associated with the services you are quoting for. For instance, if your going rate for web development is $60 per hour before added expenses for software and/or printing, you should reference your base rate in this section and include additional expenses in a separate section.
Other Materials and Resources
Not all freelance services require supplementary resources, so only add this section if it’s relevant to your project. These additional resources can include the cost of subscription to software programs, media publications and/or research databases, project-specific tools, and more. It depends on what you need to deliver the project and whether it’s justifiable to ask your client to pay for it.
Travel and Transportation
Some freelance services require the quote issuer to pay for transportation, travel, or moving expenses. Where relevant, include these expenses in their own section in your freelance quote. Again, it all depends on the type of project you agree to deliver and how essential the expense is for getting the job done right.
Travel and transportation costs might include plane or train tickets, cab fares, hotel fees, and sometimes meals and other expenses incurred while working on the project. Be prepared to explain why each cost is included and what the justification is for charging your client for it.
After breaking down the individual costs and expenses involved in the project, the next thing to include is a total cost calculation. This should include all forecasted fees, discounts, deposits, and taxes. Make sure this overall cost calculation is easy to find, as most clients skim-read freelance quotes to get a sense of their affordability before delving into the details later.
4 – Billing and Payment Terms
Including billing and payment terms is another way to help clients gauge the suitability and affordability of your quote much faster. Add the following details to this section if they’re compatible with the way you operate:
- An invoicing schedule (how often, which specific dates, delivery method)
- Approved payment methods (credit card, Paypal, bank transfer, etc.)
- Payment dates and amount(s) (single or multiple)
- Terms for late payment (interest fees, penalty charges, etc.)
- Deposit requirements where relevant (payment deadline, amount)
5 – Expiry Date
It’s standard practice when issuing quotes to include an expiry date. After which, the quote becomes invalid. If the client still wishes to proceed, a new quote should be drafted to ensure your cost calculations are fully accurate and up to date.
Market prices are constantly fluctuating and can change dramatically within just a few short weeks. Including an expiry date is an easy way to protect yourself from clients who delay approval and only attempt to return your quote after your competitor’s prices have increased.
The recommended window before expiry is thirty days but can be as short as fifteen in some cases.
Don’t forget to leave enough space for your customer to sign and date the quote.
The Benefits of Using a Freelance Price Quote
Quotes are a key component of operating professionally and reliably as a freelancer. These detailed documents don’t just inform your clients; they also provide a variety of benefits to the issuer and make it easier to cost calculate future projects.
Here are some advantages of writing clear and comprehensive freelance quotes:
1 – Makes Your Expectations Known
Often, a client won’t know exactly which tasks and processes are involved in completing a particular project. There may be requirements and expenses that they have not anticipated because they don’t know the industry or service well. Your quote is an opportunity to let your client take a look at the inside workings of a job.
Neither party is obligated to the other until the quote has been signed by both, which makes it a useful way to negotiate on terms. An unsigned quote can be amended as many times as necessary if either party disagrees, or it can be offered as a take-or-leave proposal. The important thing is both freelancer and client know exactly what they’d be promising to deliver before agreeing to deliver it.
2 – Speeds Up Invoicing
Most (if not all) of the information required for a cost invoice is included in a freelance quote making the invoicing process much quicker and easier. You can use the details already contained in a client’s quote to define billable and nonbillable hours, state hourly rates, and schedule payments.
3 – Identities the Valuable Clients
Freelance quotes are a handy way to skip past a lot of the verbal negotiations that might otherwise be needed to identify a sincere client. Rather than having a protracted discussion about your base rates and essential requirements with every interested party, you can issue a quote and let the client decide if its terms are suitable. It’s an easy method of weeding out non-committal buyers at the early stages.
Whether you’re starting out as a freelancer or have been building your business for years, a skillfully written quote can be an extremely valuable tool. Use your freelance quotes to inform, educate, highlight, reassure and build a strong relationship with clients who are sincerely passionate about your services.